Monday, June 18, 2012

Got Net? Working toward a thoroughly wired Washington

Rep. John McCoy
Led by state Rep. John McCoy, legislative Democrats are continuing the demanding, extremely needed work of investigating and promoting broadband availability. It's a territory the investigating and promoting of which other communities, states and nations neglect at their great peril. McCoy chairs the pivotal House Technology, Energy & Communications Committee, which is monitoring state and federal work at establishing universal service reform. The McCoy committee, among its other missions, wants to find the best way to see to it that the so-called Internet Age is blind to color and economic class.
"We have before us a huge and fundamental goal," said McCoy. "It is the advancement of broadband services for citizens, communities and neighborhoods that right now are getting short shrift. We want to write -- we must write -- legislation that will strengthen broadband-availability in each of our 39 counties."
He emphasized that higher education and economic development "are intertwined with and, indeed, very closely connected with this booming technological sector of our 21st-century economy. It's fundamental that we emphasize equitable opportunities in Washington's communities of color -- and in our communities of economic injustice and socio-political disenfranchisement."
McCoy noted a recent Seattle Times editorial -- "Mining deeper (and younger) for tomorrow's workers and citizens " (Tuesday, June 12, 2012) -- lamenting the dearth of engineers and scientists who have been produced by Washington's colleges and universities. The newspaper editorial emphasizes that businesses here in the Evergreen State are crying out for more women and men who are ready and qualified to step into new-century careers.
McCoy himself has a background very much heaped in technology. Retiring in 1981, his 20-year United States Air Force career had been filled with extensive training in computer operations and programming. He then worked as a computer technician in the White House from 1982 to 1985. McCoy went on to a management career in the private sector that continued his work and calling in the field of computer programming and operations.

To read this story in Spanish, please click here.